Engineering plastics offer the design freedom manufacturers need to meet lightweighting and cost requirements for complex parts. High-quality plastic materials can be produced quickly and at high volume, but holistic simulation is needed to tailor materials to the individual product requirements. Altair offers a comprehensive set of engineering plastic solutions to produce innovative plastic parts quickly and reliably.
Simulation is often used to validate the performance of a mature component, but if a part has the wrong shape, even the best material cannot compensate for the losses in performance. Modern materials reach their potential in combination with optimal geometric layout, derived from designs tailored to withstand the stresses and strains experienced in operation.
With topology optimizaton, ideal components are designed by determining the most effective material placement and load paths. In later development phases, shape optimization can be used for dimensioning, considering local material effects and allowing for further improvement of the component design.
Modern thermoplastic component development requires companies to consider the manufacturing process, part geometry and material in an integrated simulation approach.
Plastics reinforced with short glass or carbon fibers have anisotropic properties depending on how the fibers align during injection molding Modern optimization methods support part design and development through accurate numerical material description, which considers the typical characteristics of the plastic in the simulation.
Simulation offers greater insight into how the modification of manufacturing process parameters may affect component material behavior.
Modern injection molding enables product quality control to ensure part manufacturability during the design process. Engineers can analyze and modify part design while optimizing for form, fit and function.
With Altair’s manufacturing simulation tools, users can analyze mold and feed system designs, single and multi-cavity family mold layouts. They can also improve sprue, runner, and gate position to influence fiber orientations and avoid weakening weld lines.